CEM India 2017 International Conference & Exhibition for Emissions Monitoring in India

Date: September 26-28, 2017
Venue: Leela Ambience Convention Hotel, Delhi 

Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) in collaboration with International Labmate Limited-UK, Source Testing Association-UK, IEA-Clean Coal Centre- UK and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), organized a three-day international conference and exhibition on effectively monitoring industrial emissions in India - CEM India 2017 from 26 September to 28 September 2017.

This is a first of its kind conference organized in India on Continuous Emission Monitoring System (CEMS). This was a capacity building initiative by CSE in order to help successful implementation of CEMS in India. CEMS is an important initiative taken by the Ministry of Environment and Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) and Central pollution Control Board (CPCB) to revolutionalise the age old system of emission monitoring and reporting in Indian industries. CPCB mandated the installation of CEMS in 17 categories of industries in Feb2017 and the guidelines for implementation have been released in August 2017.


CEM 2017 was organized with an idea to bring together the expertise and experience from developed countries where CEMS has been well established. The exhibition was intended to familiarize Indian stakeholders about variety of technology available across the world. This was a common platform to involve industries, regulators, service providers, CEMS manufacturers and laboratories to exchange information, understand the regulatory regime across the world and collaborate for successful implementation of the same in India.
The International CEM Conferences and Exhibitions were first started in Europe in 1997 and have been held in the UK, The Netherlands, Denmark, France, Italy, Switzerland, The Czech Republic, Turkey and Portugal. In every country, the event has been proven a successful knowledge sharing platform and benefitted the stakeholders.

Running parallel to the conference was an exhibition of CEM Domestic and International equipment manufacturers and suppliers has also been organised, as part of the event, to demonstrate and provide technical guidance on the latest CEM products and services available in the market and their suitability. Over 50 CEMS manufacturers, from across the world, exhibit their equipment at the conference. Some of the participating CEMS manufacturers include Ankersmid Sampling, Apex Instruments, Environmental Technology Publications, Environment S.A Group, Fives Pillard, Focused Photonics, Forbes Marshall, Gasmet Technologies (Asia), LNI Swissgass, M&C TechGroup, Nevco Engineers, Pollution SRL, Prima Equipment, Spantech Products, Turnkey Instruments etc.

The conference was inaugurated by Mr. A. Sudhakar, Member Secretary, CPCB, Mr. Chandra Bhushan, Deputy Director General, CSE and Mr. William Averdieck, Chairman, Source Testing Association (STA). During inauguration, CSE released its book "CEMS: A technical guidance manual". It is India’s first and only comprehensive technical guidance manual on CEMS. The manual is a supplement to CPCB guidelines on CEMS. The salient features of manual include sampling techniques, available technology options, their suitability for an industry and the kind of certification, calibration and verification required. The manual also explains data acquisition, handing and compliance check mechanism required to ensure credibility of the system. CEMS regulations and best practices in Europe, US and those proposed in India have also been discussed in the manual. 
The sessions in the day included presentations and discussions on “Regulations” and “Particulate Matter monitoring”. The regulation session began with the presentations on current regulatory regime with respect to CEMS in India and the problems being faced during installation, operation and maintenance and tamperproof data transfer from CEMS. This was followed by experience of Europe in CEMS installation, operation, calibration, quality control etc.

After lunch, session on particulate matter (PM) monitoring began which consisted of different case studies from India and abroad. Presentations on correct technology for different industries, importance of accurate calibration and isokinetic sampling, data quality of dust monitoring, lowering PM emissions through collected information were presented by speakers from India, UK, US and Germany.

The day ended with the discussions on correct PM monitoring selection and installation, calibration, operation and maintenance. Participants found the day as informative and knowledgeable.

The agenda of the second day of the event was “Gas CEMS” and “Quality assurance of CEMS”.
The gaseous CEMS technologies are generally not differentiable by the buyers in term of technical advantages, limitations as well as long term operational benefits. The session on gas CEMS gave an insight on the technological options available in the market, their advantages and limitations and their suitability in different kind of operations. The session consisted of case study on an Indian cement plant and a waste incinerator plant in the Europe. The session ended with insights on the importance of gas sampling and conditioning.

After lunch, the session on quality assurance gave an overview of the different approaches to quality assurance of CEMS in US and UK and EU, with reference to the growing need in India for cost effective, working and accurate CEMS. It highlighted the critical parts of maintaining quality assurance of CEMS. The presentations and discussions covered topics like calibration options for gas detection systems, making CEMS more affordable, problems and mistakes in gas sampling and conditioning, modern approaches towards cold extractive CEMS, The new standard EN 15267 part 4, total organic carbon determination through FID analyzer and alternative options to measure SO2.

The final day of the event began with a session on mercury emission monitoring. Mercury being a hazardous pollutant has gained attention around the globe and covered under continuous emission monitoring in countries like US and Canada, and is underway in Europe, China, Korea etc. India has still to acquire better understanding of the subject. Thus this session was to provide insights from all around the world to prepare India for its next step.
After lunch, the session on data acquisition and handling system began. The session focused on the regulations in India for data acquisition, handling and reporting and the issues and challenges being faced during data capturing, its management and transfer.

The event finally ended up with an hour long wrap up session. The eminent speakers during the session were Mr. Chandra Bhushan, deputy director general, CSE speaking from civil society perspective, Mr. J. S. Kamyotra, a retired CPCB official providing his expert opinion in the field, Mr. Chirag Bhimani, a senior scientist at Gujarat pollution control board, presenting his ideas from regulators side and Mr. Prashant Kokil, chief sustainability officer, Tata Power, providing the view of industries.

The sessions carried in three days were very informative and presented decades of expertise of CEMS from developed world.  CPCB’s initiative of CEMS implementation in India was well appreciated by the participants. The problem in CEMS implementation was clearly understood. With the release of CPCB guidelines and CSE’s technical manual, it is expected to improve, provided it is enforced properly.

Outcome/Recommendation from the event put forward following key improvements that are must to ensure success of CEMS in India:

  • Development of an indigenous certification system

  • Lab empanelment system

  • Capacity building on regulators, industries and related parties were

  • Inspection of CEMS installation in Industries in order to understand the status and need of corrective measures.

It is crucial to create a working group/committee and start preparing an action plan for such improvements. Development of strategic action plan is must. The expert agencies such as NPL (UK), TUV (France), TUV (Germany) are interested in developing their infrastructure and share expertise in India for such jobs, however, they primarily look for government’s assurance.

Since development of such system may require involvement of various India agencies even outside the CPCB purview, initiatives needs to be taken at the ministry level.  Not to forget, the government must focus on capacity building part which is crucial for implementation. It is high time that the stakeholders, especially the regulators are trained while CEMS is being experienced so that CEMS can become an effective tool of compliance enforcement in reality.